Texas native Amy Acker has built a career centered around television. The talented actress got her start on TV and while she has ventured over to the big screen from time to time, Acker has found herself on some pretty interesting shows.
Amy Acker didn’t have much experience before she got her first big break. Her first appearance on TV came on the series Wishbone. Acker then followed that up with the TV mini-series To Serve and Protect, a story about three generations of Dallas police officers who team up to track down the deadliest serial killer ever to be seen in Texas. She pulled down an episode on the series Special Unit 2 so it wasn’t an impressive resume when she nailed the role of Winifred Burkle.
AMY ACKER ON ANGEL
Amy Acker first appeared as Winifred “Fred” Burkle in Angel’s second season. Her introduction came when Angel (David Boreanaz) finds her in a cave in Pylea, a demon world that portals people to it as slaves. Her presence there and the length of her time in the cave had seriously stunted her social skills. But as Angel and his crew liberate those on Pylea, Fred sees Angel in his true demonic guise and is unbothered by it. It seems that her presence almost has a calming effect on Angel. From there, Fred begins her journey back to normalcy as she returns to Los Angeles with Angel and the gang.
Amy Acker’s run on the show lasted four seasons, all the way up to the series finale. But in one of the many twists and turns in the series, Fred succumbs. But Joss Whedon, the series creator and sometimes writer, decided to kill off Fred so that Acker would be able to “play somebody new, somebody who’s regal and scary and different than anything she’s gotten to do on the show. The best way to do that of course is to kill her and have her become somebody else.” That she did. As she died in the series final season, she quickly came back to life as the demon, an Old One, Illyria. Acker would portray Illyria up to the finale.
THE JOSS WHEDON EFFECT
Angel wouldn’t be the only affiliation Amy Acker would have with Joss Whedon. Because of her work on Angel, Acker forged a relationship with Whedon as evidenced by her returning to another of his TV series, this time in Dollhouse. Acker appeared as Dr. Claire Saunders at the end of season one and then joined the cast full-time for the show’s second and final season.
With two Whedon shows under her belt, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Whedon reached out to Acker for his movie Much Ado About Nothing. Acker played Beatrice in the movie, which also starred other Whedon alums, Nathan Fillion (Firefly) and Alexis Denisof (Angel).
AMY ACKER AFTER WHEDON
Amy Acker was starting to get some recognition. Her time on Angel opened doors to other shows as she found herself guest-starring on many as she began to put together an impressive list. How I Met Your Mother, Drive, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Ghost Whisperer, and Private Practice were just a few.
She joined the cast of Alias, a series that starred Jennifer Garner and lasted two seasons. She found time on Human Target, The Good Wife, and Happy Town. She appeared in the horror movie The Cabin in the Woods then continued her TV career with spots on Once Upon A Time, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and Husbands for which Acker won an Indie Series Award for Best Guest Star – Comedy. Speaking of awards, Amy Acker also pulled down a Saturn for Best Supporting Actress on Television for her role on Angel.
Another big move for Amy Acker was grabbing the role of Root on the popular series Person of Interest. It was a role she truly loved and one that was hard to say goodbye to, even though she knew the end was coming. She told IGN, “Well, I think they broke it in the best possible way. They said, “Root is going to die, but you’re still going to be part of the show. You’re becoming a god.” So it was kind of hard to get mad at them.”
And a “god” she became. Her voice was used in the role of the Machine. “I didn’t quite know what the involvement was going to be necessarily when I became the voice of the Machine, but it actually ended up — I was crying, “I’m so sad to leave!”, thinking I wasn’t going to see everyone. And then the way that it worked out with the last three episodes, they were like, “You’re back!”
AMY ACKER NOW
Amy’s most recent work has been as the lead on The Gifted playing Kate Strucker, a superhero series that is set in the X-Men universe. Acker has also been seen in a recurring role on the series Suits. However, she hasn’t had a major role on film or television since The Gifted ended in 2019. Instead, Amy Acker has made some guest appearances on shows like God Friended Me. She has also stayed very busy doing voice work. Her voice can be heard on Justice League Unlimited, Johnny Bravo, and Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated.
Now 43-years-old, outside of acting Amy Acker has been pretty busy being a mom. The actress is married to James Carpinello (Gangster Squad, Gotham) and they have two children together, a boy and a girl. While locked in Coronavirus quarantine, the couple actually shot and released a short film together. It’s called Outside. Take a look below…